8. Migration and the Left Behind

In recent decades, growing attention has been paid to the “left behind”, the members of transnational households and families who remain in the country of origin following the emigration of one or more family or household members. The population of the “left behind” is highly diverse, representing different groups of individuals with heterogeneous post-migration experiences. This group may include the spouses of migrant labourers who emigrate for work abroad; the children of migrant parents who may experience the migration of a mother, father, or both simultaneously; elderly individuals whose adult children or other close kin have emigrated abroad, and; members of migrants’ extended kinship networks who remain in the origin country. Despite the growing visibility of these diverse “left behind” populations in both academic and policy research over the past 20 years, they have remained under-researched, particularly in terms of: 1) how the “left behind” become left behind—what factors determine whether a migrant and his/her family will migrate together or will choose to be divided over national borders?; 2) how the well-being of different types of “left behind” populations is shaped by the migration of a family or household member, and; 3) how characteristics of the migrant and migration episode, including characteristics such as destination country, length of stay, gender and family role of the migrant, etc. influence the post-migration adaptation process of the left behind.

Contact: Michaella Vanore


  • Related publications

    Waidler, Jennifer, Michaella Vanore, Franziska Gassmann & Melissa Siegel, 2017, `Migration and the Multi-Dimensional Well-Being of Elderly Persons in Georgia, Journal of Population Ageing, in press , More information
    Cebotari, Victor, Valentina Mazzucato & Melissa Siegel, 2017, `Gendered perceptions of migration among Ghanaian children in transnational care, Child Indicators Research, in press , More information
    Waidler, Jennifer, Michaella Vanore, Franziska Gassmann & Melissa Siegel, 2017, `Does it matter where the children are? The wellbeing of elderly people 'left behind' by migrant children in Moldova, Ageing and Society, 37, More information
    Cebotari, Victor, Melissa Siegel & Valentina Mazzucato, 2016, `Migration and the education of children who stay behind in Moldova and Georgia, International Journal of Educational Development, 51, More information
    Cebotari, Victor, Valentina Mazzucato & Melissa Siegel, 2016, `Child development and migrant transnationalism: the health of children who stay behind in Ghana and Nigeria, Journal of Development Studies, 53, More information
    Vanore, Michaella, 2015, The Psychosocial Health of Children 'Left Behind' by Migrant Kin in Moldova and Georgia, PhD dissertation Maastricht University / United Nations University, More information
    Mazzucato, Valentina, Victor Cebotari, A. Veale, A. White, M. Grassi & J. Vivet , 2015, `International Parental Migration and the Psychological Well-being of Children in Ghana, Angola, and Nigeria, Social Science and Medicine, 132, More information
    Vanore, Michaella, Valentina Mazzucato & Melissa Siegel, 2014, `‘Left behind’ but not left alone: Parental migration & the psychosocial health of children in Moldova, Social Science & Medicine, 132, More information
    Gassmann, Franziska, Melissa Siegel, Michaella Vanore & Jennifer Waidler, 2013, The impact of migration on children left behind in Moldova, UNU-MERIT Working Paper 2013-043
    Mazzucato, Valentina & Victor Cebotari, 2013, Codebook: Transnational Child Raising Arrangements between Africa and Europe (TCRAf-Eu), version 09/09/2013 ed. Maastricht University: Faculty of Arts and Social Sciences, More information
    Gassmann, Franziska, Melissa Siegel, Michaella Vanore & Jennifer Waidler, 2012, The impact of migration on elderly left behind in Moldova, UNU-MERIT Working Paper 2012-082
    Vanore, Michaella & Melissa Siegel, 2011, `Migration and its impact on those staying behind: New evidence from Georgia and the Republic of Moldova, Migration Policy Practice, III